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Who we are and what we do

Youth aboutThe Focal Point on Youth aims to build an awareness of the global situation of young people, as well as promote their rights and aspirations. The Focal Point also works towards greater participation of young people in decision-making as a means of achieving peace and development. 

We are part of the Social Integration Branch, which falls within the Division for Social Policy and Development (DSPD) of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) in the United Nations Secretariat.

You can reach us by email at youth@un.org , fax at 1 212 963 0111. Our mailing address is: The Focal Point on Youth, 29th Floor, United Nations Secretariat, New York, NY 10017, USA. 

You can find out more about the work of UN agencies on youth issues

 



Our Mandate:

The mandate of the Focal Point on Youth is predominantly based on the World Programme of Action for Youth. It has been set up to:

  • enhance awareness of the global situation of youth and increase recognition of the rights and aspirations of youth;
  • promote national youth policies, national youth coordinating mechanisms and national youth programmes of action as integral parts of social and economic development, in cooperation with both governmental and non-governmental organizations;
  • and strengthen the participation of youth in decision-making processes at all levels in order to increase their impact on national development and international cooperation. 

 



How does the Focal Point on Youth relate to the UN system as a whole?

The Focal Point on Youth enhances awareness of the global situation of youth and increase recognition of the rights and aspirations of youth; promotes national youth policies, national youth coordinating mechanisms and national youth programmes of action as integral parts of social and economic development, in cooperation with both governmental and non-governmental organizations; and strengthens the participation of youth in decision-making processes at all levels in order to increase their impact on national development and international cooperation.

We are a very small part of the United Nations!
 



How has the Focal Point on Youth made a difference?

In 1995, on the tenth anniversary of International Youth Year, the United Nations strengthened its commitment to young people by directing the international community's response to the challenges to youth into the next millennium. It did this by adopting an international strategy — the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond — to address more effectively the problems of young men and women and to increase opportunities for their participation in society. This World Programme seeks to make Governments more responsive to the aspirations of youth for a better world, as well as to the demands of youth to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.